Imagine a world where there is no corruption, only justice;
no violence or conflict, only social peace;
no wickedness, only goodness.
Imagine a world where there is no poverty, only flourishing,
a world where everyone is wise and no one foolish.
This is exactly what God had in mind from the very beginning.
Drawing on the wisdom of Proverbs, Darrow Miller creates a clear, biblical link between virtues and flourishing. Too few Christians have made the connection between Proverbs and development. As a result, they often operate from non-biblical principles, policies and programs. Proverbs shows us how to live in the world God has made. Objective reality comes from God. To fight against reality and its truth is to fight against God.
From the Introduction
Imagine a world where there is no corruption, only justice; no violence or conflict, only social peace; no wickedness, only goodness; no mediocrity, only excellence; no hideousness, only beauty; no greed, only generosity; no slavery or human trafficking, only freedom; no sickness, only health; no death, only life. Imagine a world where there is no poverty, only flourishing, a world where everyone is wise and no one foolish. Does that sound like a real world to you? Does such a life sound at all normal? What would you say if I told you that I have just described exactly what God considers normal? What He has always intended for people? Would you laugh? Yet this is exactly what God had in mind from the very beginning.
God intended that humans flourish. Human poverty had no place in God’s original design. In God’s view (another way to say “in reality”) all of life was to flourish. God wanted the human to develop in every dimension. Hebrew writers had a word for this: shalom, defined as completeness, soundness, welfare, peace.
The God who created a flourishing universe made humans His agents in that flourishing process. If you are flourishing, you are bringing shalom to others because you are being what God intends you to be.
How do we solve the problems of poverty and underdevelopment? God has already equipped people to do that. He has provided the primary resource humans need for these solutions. What is that resource? Wisdom! Wisdom is what moves people from brokenness to wholeness, from poverty to flourishing, from underdevelopment to development. Wisdom is about life and governing in the time between paradise lost and paradise restored. Wisdom and human development, or human flourishing, are organically related. The second depends on the first. But not everyone understands that. That’s why we wrote this book.
About the Authors
Darrow Miller is co-founder of the Disciple Nations Alliance. He is a world-renowned author and teacher on Christianity and culture, apologetics, worldview, poverty, and the dignity of women. As a young adult, he was discipled by Francis Schaeffer at L’Abri Fellowship in Switzerland, where he spent three years. Darrow holds a master’s degree in adult education and pursued graduate studies in several other topics. He has written and co-written numerous books and articles which can be found at our printed books and resources section, and he keeps a regular blog called Darrow Miller and Friends. He lives with his wife, Marilyn, in Arizona, and they have four children and 15 grandchildren.
Gary Brumbelow serves as editorial manager for the Disciple Nations Alliance, a function in which he sometimes converts ideas to prose and sometimes simply burnishes good writing. He also manages the blog Darrow Miller and Friends. Gary served 14 years as executive director of InterAct Ministries, an Oregon-based church-planting organization serving in Canada, Alaska, and Siberia, and eight years as a missionary among First Nations people of Canada. He holds a master’s degree in communication from Wheaton College and a graduate studies diploma from Western Seminary. Gary and his wife, Valerie, live near Portland, Oregon.